"Weapons-grade femininity"


#1

What does this mean?


How to walk in high heels
#2

It has happened to me before that I have lost the better part of my mind over a woman who surely knew that this was happening and who was perpetuating the effect her displayed sexuality had on my little brain for her personal gain.
It’s really a very fundamental kind of event, I’d think.
(And seeing that that’s just how the world works apparently, I’m not saying that it’s bad or anything. Everyone treats everyone else unfairly, so maybe it evens out)


#3

Oh wow, what did she display, and what did she gain, if you don’t mind? I find this to be as fascinating as the heels discussion.


#4

Oh, personal history details contemplation; how tingling-ly uncomfortable.

Well really it starts innocently and dumb enough with the female bartenders and waitresses, who know exactly how to press their customers buttons for maximum tip (while really only being average on the whole food-and-drinks-carrying). What do you have to do? Well, a slim cut top will do, nice booty jeans too, skirt can do of course. Then, pretend your male customers are just so damn interesting and charming, little wink here, little squeeze (from her) there. Innocent fun, and yes, they know, she knows too, and yet we choose to not acknowledge it and insist it’s really just tip for a job well done.

Then there are those who have successfully weaponized the dove-eyes thing. Truly, if you’re good at it, and also have pretty eyes to begin with and good mascara skills, you can ask for the dumbest biggest favours. There’s a good chance suckers like me will still volunteer. And yes, one level of the brain says that this is a rouse, and yet it doesn’t really matter as those primal buttons being pushed reach so deep.

F., and this one gets worse, too. If something I did could carry the possibility of making these women cry, they (they were 2 in my personal history) would preemptively put on thickly the least water resistant eye make-up; yeah, to really drive home the hurt.
Even thinking about it after all these years makes me uncomfortable.

Let me think about this some more,

Edit: wait, is it ‘dove eyes’, or ‘doe eyes’? Both good? That there are birds involved here seems not right.


#5

Feels a good time to post this again…


#6

This doesn’t count. They’re just doing their job. When I interact with waitstaff, it’s pretty clear that it’s an employee-customer relationship, no matter how friendly they are with me or I am with them.

This might be because I’m kind of an outlier in that area, but my tip doesn’t depend on the bartender’s appearance at all. There are things that can affect how much I tip, but they have to be 1) service related and 2) really extraordinary. Most of the time, I just tip whatever I was going to tip.

Most bars I’ve been to have been busy enough where the bartenders don’t really have time to flirt with the patrons.

Playing devil’s advocate, if a bartender remembered me from last time, and treated me like a human being instead of an irritation, I would be more willing to give them a tip. Being nice to the customers I think would result in bigger tips, or at least it wouldn’t hurt. Even if a female bartender is being a little flirtatious, that doesn’t mean she’s tapping into some magical female power. It just means people tend to tip better if the bartender makes them feel good. I’m sure if a male bartender had good social skills, flirted with the female customers, and was easy on the eyes, he would get good tips too.


#7

Given the uphill battle women have had throughout history trying to reach parity with men, I can’t begrudge someone using looks, guile, or the stereotypical behaviours of the average male to their benefit, IMHO.

If anything, this sort of issue just goes to show you how pervasive and predictable “average” males are.

i have to call bullshit on this, though. This reads to me more like “No way what I said could have possibly upset the person this much”.


#8

Oh, I remember that once I almost signed up for a local newspaper (those were still a thing) subscription in a city I didn’t live in because of the agent.

So I once went to an outdoor, inner city music festival. Took some ecstasy (that matters later) and some other stuff. Then, while meandering around, I was engaged by a young woman signing up tryout newspaper subscriptions for the local paper.
She was about my age, so that was good, and really in the zone (must have been a good haul for her so far), and really, the atmosphere, and the weather, and the thousands of people’s pheromones were all doing their thing.
And holy cow, my poor little brain and the drugs in it really responded to that woman. Ecstasy makes you very susceptible to beauty, and everything social. So, we talked and flirted -and my brain interpreted it as ‘My god, we are getting along sooo well!’ And she was beautiful, and the drugs’ verdict was, 'Clearly, never seen one as beautiful ever!'
And there was touching (by her) and great approval of that was felt.
And, oh, her request was so simple, just sign up for 2 or three month of local paper. I did not live in the city, so there was no way I would ever get the paper, but my brain said, ‘If I were to sadden her with rejection, I could not bear it. The sadness would tear me apart (clearly)’

Long story short, I did not sign up, and did reject the offer eventually, but it was a hard battle.

Now, did the girl manipulate me with great malice? No, of course not. In fact I believe that everyone was having fun and no one was exploited. But also, the woman probably signed a lot of subscriptions not because the newspaper was good, or because she had excellent compelling arguments, but (partly) because she was beautiful and bubbly and willing and able to give potential customers just the right kind of nudge.

Edit: I must leave you to it now unfortunately. It’s close to 2 a.m. in my location. But I still wanted to share that anecdote.


#9

This.

Remember the wave of mega clubs in the 90s? Like the 3-5 story structures with bars and dance floors on every floor?
I worked in one of those from 1993-95. It had about a 50/50 split female/male bartenders - and the dudes did just as well if not better than the ladies. Because just like the ladies they were good with faces good talkers and fast pourers. Being good at service means being good with people, but there’s nothing weaponized about if there is a monetary exchange.

Are there people that prey on others and use their charm and looks to their own advantage? Sure. But you don’t usually find them waiting tables.


#10

IMO “femininity” is pure stereotype, so I am not comfortable with its use supposing a shared context, any more than somebody ribbing me with “Ya know what black people are like, right?” Do I really? Let’s rather suppose that I don’t, that I am open-minded.

Where it might have meaning is with your personal identity. If you tell me that you are a certain gender or ethnicity and that it important for me to understand you and your experience, then I can try to listen. But I don’t go taking it upon myself to categorize people based upon the superficialities of visual appearance.

This is I think most of the dysfunction of bigotry, that a lot of it is perpetuated by people fetishizing the visual, and thus prioritizing the most superficial differences.


#11

There are definitely some women who wield what almost amount to superpowers over men. Not all or even most women, and maybe not all men. I have certainly been on the receiving end a couple of times. The last time was a couple of years ago at WDW, right under Spaceship Earth. I was waiting for my kids, and there was a girl there waiting for someone as well. She came over and asked me some innocuous and innocent question about the park. I would guess she asked me because I had a lanyard with a bunch of trading pins on it. Anyway, I answered her question. We exchanged a few sentences, and my kids showed up, and we left.
But it shook me. I remember walking away thinking that if she had asked me to jump off of a cliff, I probably would have. It was very odd. Enough that I am talking about it three years later. Nothing she said or did gave me the impression that she was even aware of it.
And I am not a person given to flirting or any of that.


#12

Yeah, I have a similar person I know. She’s extremely attractive, and I knew her through church growing up (and lots of people I know had a crush on her at some point, myself included). As an adult, I started to realize that she was the sort of person who would intentionally try to get attention from men, even in front of her spouse. She would always date guys who didn’t have enough self esteem to call her out on it as well.

I decided to not hang out with her anymore, because A. There’s no chance of it ever going anywhere, B. She is clearly not the sort of person I’d want to date anyways and C. yes, even rationally knowing all this around her I would respond to her flirtiness and that made me uncomfortable.

So I get it. Moral of the story: men are idiots. This is also the reason I don’t like going to strip clubs, because those women have ego stroking manipulation down to a science and it makes me deeply uncomfortable how good they are at pushing buttons.


#13

Oh excellent, back to this.
Good times.

/out


#14

This isn’t “femininity”, weapons-grade or otherwise. This is straight-up manipulation at best, witness misinterpretation at worst.

Men do the same thing, only it gets called “charming”.

Have you noticed such people use the exact same tactics on both men and women, no matter the orientation of the target?

I have an ex-friend who used to pull this on me: rubbing my forearm, making big eyes whenever she wanted to me to do something for her (since I’m nearly a foot taller than her, usually it was to get something from a top shelf). I finally told her rather curtly, “I’m not a lesbian. Stop that.” Neither was she, for that matter, but as a small person with big eyes she’d learnt that “being cute” got her what she wanted. She was milking this child-like aspect of her appearance well into her late 30s.

Truth: she really didn’t know how to practise the unspoken give and take of most friendships.

But like I said: there are men who do the same thing. The guy who always touches the arm or shoulder of the person they’re talking to, man or woman. The guy who smiles because he knows his is dazzling, not for joy.

It’s all the same thing.


#15


#16

If you let other people decide how you feel, instead of taking responsibility for it yourself, then you seem to be setting yourself up for feeling manipulated. Being proactive means pushing your own buttons. You can’t control what others do, but with some discipline you arguably can control (or at least accept) what you feel about it.


#17

I’ve been mulling this article over, wondering how seriously I should take it.


#18

Please examine your own assumptions and unrealistic expectations.

And if you have beef with how society has contrived to structured every conceivable interaction between males and females so that it inevitably becomes a ‘quid pro quo’ proposition, then take that up with your fellow members of the patriarchy.

None of the women here said or even implied that.

Excellent point; opportunists and manipulators come in every ‘flavor’ you can think of; neither males nor females have a monopoly on such behavior.


#19

I’m dying. I’m fucking dead. Look, I hardly wear makeup, but let me tell you: we do not put on our makeup in the morning with the express purpose of maybe being able to look like a stoned raccoon in case we have to cry at some man later. Makeup is expensive. Shit that claims to be “waterproof” isn’t, always. I’ve got at least 3 expensive “smudgeproof” “won’t come off” lipsticks that don’t stay on my lips worth a damn.


#20

I will disagree with this only through personal experience. Being charming is not necessarily manipulation. Manipulation often does involve using charm.

I have often been told by women (romantically and non romantically involved) that I am a very charming man. I do not have a body like The Rock, I do not have Brad Pitt’s looks, I am not a physical heartthrob by any means. As one female friend said to me “You know how to talk to a woman, you charmer.” I don’t see it myself…but I trust that she is speaking the truth.

My point here is I have never ever not once taken advantage or purposefully manipulated with ill intent any person. I have had it done to me by a woman, I have certainly seen men do it to women. And charming could be used to categorize those people; but not all charming people are “straight up” manipulating (and the connotation here is ill intent).

I am in agreement with the whole of your perspective, if I understand it properly. My spouse often does the “honeyyyyyyyy! I’d love it if you could help me get XYZ” and I after years of that finally turned and said dead faced “Is there any reason you can’t just ask me politely? as in " could you please hand me my purse?”